Private lessons over the Internet
At a glance...
- Free guitar review session
- From 8yrs to 80yrs, all welcome
- Tuition via Skype or Google Hangouts
- Complete beginners to advanced players
- Electric or acoustic; all contemporary genres / styles
- Professional musician and qualified teacher
- £18 ($22) per 45 minute session or £24 ($30) per hour
- For face-to-face guitar lessons (in Arnside) click here
Why would I choose you?
Some folks are 'sharers'; they like to pass-on stuff they've learned. Their eyes light-up when they talk about their interests and passions. If they help someone to realise, or learn something; to see a new perspective or improve a skill ~ that may well make their day.
I'm one of those people. Nothing fuels me more than when students gain fresh insight and they discover, or re-discover, their passion for playing guitar.
I've been informally educating for as long as I can remember; I've welcomed showing people how to play guitar since I could strum one myself!
I began 'officially' giving guitar lessons about 25yrs ago and have since run my own recording studio for 5yrs, spent over a decade as a training consultant, been a full-time 'jobbing' musician and gained qualifications in training, life-coaching and teaching along the way.
I've realised a lot of things about learning and teaching; and people; in that time. One of my most significant realisations, in my journey as a life-long learner, is that my knowledge; everything I know; I created. Lots of 'teachers' have tried to force knowledge from their heads into mine ~ mostly when I was at school ~ but that never really worked for me. I don't think that works for many of us.
I'm not a great believer in fixed, systematic approaches to learning an instrument. My approach is to adapt to what works for you, and I come with a clean slate; no expectations and no judgements.
Maybe we'll work on learning other peoples songs, maybe we'll work upon you writing your own. Maybe we'll focus upon strumming, or picking, or maybe you want to play lead guitarist without even playing a chord. It's likely whatever we focus upon will change and develop over time. Maybe you're pretty good but feel stuck in a rut...The point is that I won't be telling you what we're going to do ~ we will discover what you most enjoy and find rewarding, and focus upon that.
I'm fishing for your motivation, and when we find it I'll be doing my utmost to feed and fuel it! That will inform the route we take in our journey together....My focus is upon what you want - not what I want to give you.
Neither do I have much time for the concept of 'talent'. I've never met anyone who can play well because they're talented...on the other hand, I have met talented people who can't play very well! The reason I'm a very competant guitarist is because I've spent over 25,000 hours playing guitar...not because of how 'talented' I may or may not be.
Don't waste time trying to decide whether you're talented and please, please - do not think that you can't learn to play guitar because you're not 'talented' enough!
If you practice, frequently and regularly, in an informed and focused way;
~ you will become a guitar player. Simples.
I hope you choose me as someone to help guide you.
How does it work?
1) Online guitar tuition provides the one-to-one guidance and facilitation that video lessons cannot deliver, whilst enabling you to learn within the comfort of your own home. Wherever you are in the world you can access guitar tuition with me - a working musician with over 30yrs experience - You will require the following:
- A broadband Internet connection
- A suitable PC / laptop / tablet c/w web cam
- Skype or Hangouts (both free software)
- A PayPal account (to make payments) Or online banking (direct transfers)
That said ~ I have had successful sessions with students who are only using their phones!
My fees are currently £18 (under $30) for each 45min session. I send out invoices monthly, around the 1st.
Before we begin I offer a 20 minute session that we can use to assess whether we're a good match for one another, and to check the technology is working. Simply fill out the form on the right and I'll be in touch to fix up a time for us to meet online. If time permits please complete the questionnaire.
2) Face-to-face guitar tuition is also available for those who are local to the Cumbria and Lancashire areas. See here for full details.
Are you good enough?
In my experience, even the most confident of us enter a new classroom with some amount of nervous trepidation. Sometimes, it seems there is something inherently scary about learning. I believe that is because of negative experiences in the past; being told we're not good enough, or being exposed in some way by poor teaching practices.
I remember asking a student in the States what he liked about my approach. He considered for a moment and then said, "You've got a great 'bedside manner'. You're always friendly and enthusiastic. I don't ever think you're judging me. I trust you."
There is no 'good enough' that you need to be :)
It all seems very technical!
If you're computer-savvy then there are all sorts of useful tools that we can use to enhance how we work together; sharing screens and documents, exchanging audio and video files etc. I recommend we use Google Hangouts and many of the other tools that they provide.
However, I also teach many people who have very little technical knowledge or ability. Both Hangouts and Skype are free and very easy to use. We simply exchange gmail addresses or contact I.D.s and I call you at an agreed time. Easy as ABC :)
- Switch your PC off and then on again shortly before the video call
- Close any programs that may be using the Internet / broadband
- Use a hard-wired connection whenever possible, as Wifi tends to be a weaker connection - as little as half the speed
- If you have to use Wifi, try to ensure no-one else is using the same Wifi connection during our session
- Wherever possible, disconnect any unnecessary devices from your USB ports, particularly if your web cam connects via USB
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"I have found Robin to be a very engaging and enthusiastic instructor who has a very practical and fun approach to teaching guitar which you would expect from a performing musician. This is supported by a sound understanding of music theory and his published material written specifically around the guitar is very informative and extremely well presented. Any initial reservations I had about using Skype as a medium for conducting guitar lessons were quickly dismissed and I have found the experience with Robin to be very positive. I would recommend to anyone thinking of taking guitar lessons to give it a go." ~ Mark (Qatar)
If you have the chance prior to our call, please complete this short questionnaire.
~ Val Ross